Datagram Transport Layer Security (DTLS) is a protocol used to secure datagram-based communications. It's based on the stream-focused Transport Layer Security (TLS), providing a similar level of security. As a datagram protocol, DTLS doesn't guarantee the order of message delivery, or even that messages will be delivered at all. However, DTLS gains the benefits of datagram protocols, too; in particular, the lower overhead and reduced latency.
These features are especially useful for one of the most common areas in which DTLS comes into play: WebRTC. All of the WebRTC related protocols are required to encrypt their communications using DTLS; this includes SCTP, SRTP, and STUN.
- Datagram Transport Layer Security on Wikipedia
- Related specification
- RFC 5763: Framework for Establishing a Secure Real-time Transport Protocol (SRTP) Security Context Using DTLS
- RFC 5764: DTLS Extension to Establish Keys for the Secure Real-time Transport Protocol (SRTP)
- RFC 6083: DTLS for Stream Control Transmission Protocol (SCTP)
- RFC 8261: Datagram Transport Layer Security (DTLS) Encapsulation of SCTP Packets
- RFC 7350: Datagram Transport Layer Security (DTLS) as Transport for Session Traversal Utilities for NAT (STUN)
- RFC 7925: TLS / DTLS Profiles for the Internet of Things